Following on from the previous Snapshot, Amendments to the Liquor Control Regulations: making it easier to drink?, the new exemptions regarding live entertainment venues and small charter vehicles are now addressed.
Possibly in order to address businesses, such as The Jazz Cellar in Mount Hawthorn, which have been operating without a liquor licence, the Regulations have been amended to authorise venues whose primary purpose is to facilitate continuous live entertainment, to allow patrons to consume BYO liquor on the premises without the need to obtain a licence. However, in order to qualify under the new exemption:
the capacity of the venue must not exceed 200;
the operators of the business and its employees must not have previously been found to be unfit or improper to have an interest in any licence or be the subject of a prohibition order; and
the person in charge must notify the Director at least 14 days before trade commences of their intention to allow consumption of BYO liquor on the premises.
Entertainment is defined for the purposes of the exemption as meaning ‘any musical, theatrical dance or comic entertainment but does not include any sporting contests’. Nor does it cover any entertainment provided by way of recorded music whether or not it is supplied by a DJ present at the premises. The provision or presentation of live entertainment taking place at another venue by way of any type of broadcast (including internet streaming) is not included. The providers of the entertainment are required to be physically present at the premises in order for it to constitute ‘live entertainment’ under the Regulations.
There are numerous other obligations placed on businesses operating under this exemption with respect to having juveniles on the premises, the provision of water, the showing of restricted material and dress standards of those on the premises.
Whether or not a business operating under this provision can lawfully charge customers a corkage fee is unclear. Although there does not appear to be any specific prohibition it is arguably against the intention of the exemption.
The Regulations were also amended to authorise operators of small charter vehicles, with a maximum carrying capacity of 14 adults (excluding the driver), to allow passengers in the vehicle to consume liquor. This exemption does not apply if the small charter vehicle is being used to take any of the passengers to a school function whether or not the function is held at the school and whether or not the other persons in the vehicle are also attending the function. Nor does it authorise the operator of the vehicle to sell liquor to its passengers. Also excluded are vehicles which are fitted with a taximeter, displaying taxi signs or operating from a taxi rank. To assess whether or not vehicle actually qualifies as a small charter vehicle one should consult the Regulations.
Should you have any queries about the amended exemptions or any other liquor matter, please do not hesitate to contact:
(08) 9288 6973